WASHINGTON - England's Charley Hull captured her second LPGA Tour title on Sunday, holding off New Zealand's Lydia Ko and China's Lin Xiyu to win The Ascendant LPGA event.
Hull, whose only other LPGA Tour triumph came at the 2016 Tour Championship, fired a seven-under 64 to finish 72 holes on 18-under 266 at Old American Golf Club at The Colony, Texas.
That was good enough to edge out Lin (65) by one stroke and Ko (65) by two to snap a six-year LPGA Tour win drought that Hull said had been a long wait.
"I feel very proud of myself," she said. "I had come close a few times since but I've put in some good work this year."
Thailand's Atthaya Thitikul (67) was fourth on 272. Her compatriot Moriya Jutanugarn (68) shared fifth with American Cheyenne Knight (63) on 273.
Hull said she feels like better things are coming after her breakthrough.
"My game is there. It was just my confidence and now I'm confident," she said. "I felt really good. I felt like I was really in control of my round, especially coming in.
"I could have made some more birdies and I hit good putts and they just rolled over the edge."
Lin sank a 25-foot eagle putt at the par-five 17th to momentarily match Hull for the lead, but the 26-year-old Englishwoman answered moments later with a six-foot downhill birdie putt to reclaim the lead on 18-under.
At the 18th, Ko lipped out from 12 feet for birdie while Lin and Hull, in the next and final group, gave themselves birdie chances as well.
Hull missed from 18 feet and tapped in for par, leaving Lin a 14-footer to force a playoff, but the putt faded left and Hull had the triumph.
"It was quite brilliant, actually. I found it quite exciting," Hull said. "When Janet (Lin) made eagle on No. 17, I enjoyed that. It made me want to birdie the last. I hit a good putt. I missed. But it was great fun."
Lin, a 26-year-old from Guangzhou, matched her best LPGA Tour finish, a runner-up effort in March in Thailand.
Ko, a 25-year-old Seoul-born star, is a two-time Major champion who captured her 17th career LPGA Tour title in January at the LPGA at Boca Rio.
She has not won twice in a season since claiming four titles in the 2016 campaign.
Ko opened and closed the front nine with back-to-back birdies to reach 14-under, grabbing a share of the lead with 54-hole co-leaders Hull and Lin.
Hull surged early with four birdies in the first seven holes only to make a bogey at the eighth while Lin opened with a birdie and added others at the par-five sixth and par-four 10th.
Hull leapt ahead with three birdies in a row at the 12th, par-five 13th and 14th to reach 17-under, seizing a three-stroke edge with four holes remaining.
Lin stumbled with a bogey at the par-three 11th but answered with a birdie at No. 13.
Ko birdied the 15th and 17th and Lin birdied the par-three 16th to set up the closing drama. AFP